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Pediatr Res. 1977 Jun;11(6):739-44.

Serial measurements of serum calcium, magnesium, parathyroid hormone, calcitonin, and 25-hydroxy-vitamin D in premature and term infants during the first week of life.


The mean +/- SEM of the cord, 48-hr, and 7-day values for serum calcium, magnesium, human calcitonin (HCT), parathyroid hormone (PTH), and 25-hydroxy-vitamin D (25-OHD) for premature and term infants can be seen in Table 1. Mean cord calcium concentrations were similar for term and premature infants. Serum calcium concentrations fell in both term and premature infants at 48 hr, but decreased more in the premature infants (from 10.23 +/- 0.30 to 8.74 +/- 0.19 mg/dl) than in the term infants (from 10.5 +/- 0.26 to 9.6 +/- 0.23 mg/dl). Serum calcium values increased from 48 hr to 7 days in both groups, and there was no significant difference between term and premature infants' serum calcium concentrations (10.6 +/- 0.28 and 10.12 +/- 0.3 mg/dl, respectively) at that time. There was no significant difference between term and premature cord serum magnesium concentrations. Serum magnesium concentrations increased similarly by 48 hr in both groups and remained at these concentrations at 7 days of life. Serum HCT concentrations were elevated above normal adult levels (71.9 +/- 6.6 pg/ml, 81% less than 100 pg/ml, n = 63) in both premature and term cord sera, but premature cord concentrations (146 +/- 24 pg/ml) were significantly higher than term cord concentration (91 +/- 21 pg/ml). Both term and premature infants displayed a 2-3-fold increase in serum HCT by 48 hr and a partial fall by 7 days to concentrations still above those seen in cord sera (Fig. 1). Nine of 10 premature and 9 of 10 term infants had undetectable PTH concentrations in cord sera. In two premature infants, PTH serum concenttration remained undetectable at 48 hr. However, the majority of both premature and term infants had elevated levels of PTH at 48 hr. The mean PTH concentrations were lower but still elevated at 7 days with the suggestion of higher concentrations in premature infants (Fig 2). There were no significant differences in serum 25-OHD concentrations between term and premature sera at birth or at 7 days. There was a weakly positive correlation between 25-OHD and cord calcium (r = 0.45, P less than 0.05), and a negative correlation between cord calcium and 48-hr PTH (r = -0.53, P less than 0.01). Calcium and magnesium were significantly positively correlated in 48-hr (r = 0.83) and 7-day (r = 0.84) sera in premature infants but not in term infants. Cord 25-OHD and cord HCT levels were significantly positively correlated (r = 0.80, P less than 0.01) in the term infants but not the premature infants.

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